The Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) says 2022 was the most violent year against journalism in the Western Hemisphere with Mexico and Haiti accounting for at least 29 deaths within the media industry.
The latest killing in Haiti occurred on December 18 when Francklin Tamar, 38, was shot while traveling on a motorcycle, according to local media.
The journalist died on his way to the hospital and the attack near his home in the Carrefour-Feuilles sector in downtown Port-au-Prince, was the ninth related murder of journalists in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country.
IAPA in condemning the murder reiterated a recent call made by seven organizations for governments to combat violence against journalists.
The other journalists murdered this year in Haiti are Fritz Dorilas, killed November 5; Romelo Vilsaint, October 30; Tess Garry, October 24; Frantzsen Charles and Tayson Lartigue, September 11; Maxihen Lazarre, February 23; Wilguens Louissaint and Amady John Wesley, January 6.
“2022 has the negative connotation of being the most violent year against journalism in the Western Hemisphere of which we have any record,” said the chairman of the IAPA’s Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, Carlos Jornet.
IAPA president, Michael Greenspon said the killings in Haiti, “again demonstrate the risks of violence against communicators, victims of aggressions and abuses by gangs, demonstrators, and the police.”
He has called on the authorities to “investigate with a sense of urgency and responsibility” the nine cases.
At least 16 journalists have been killed in Mexico in 2022, the highest number the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), has ever documented in the country in a single year. In a country characterized by corruption and organized crime, it’s unclear how many were targeted directly because of their work. CPJ research has confirmed a journalism-related motive for at least three of the deaths and continues to investigate the others.